Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Journey or a Quest

“The quest for certainty blocks the search for meaning. Uncertainty is the very condition to impel man to unfold his powers.”

“The greatest quest in life is to reach one’s potential.”
Michael Wynnn

“More important than the quest for certainty is the quest for clarity.”

Francois Gautier

Life has been called a journey and that’s a good analogy.  It has a beginning, middle and an end.  But recently I heard an analogy that was a little more challenging.  Life is a quest.  That one is a little harder.  Here are the differences:
·      The purpose of the journey is to arrive and perhaps relax.  The purpose of the quest is to accomplish or find something once you’ve arrived.
·      The journey gives you somewhere to go.  The quest gives you the reason to go.
·      In a journey I am looking at something.  In a quest I am looking for something.
·      There is usually little risk of failure in a journey.  There is a huge risk of failure in a quest.
·      Any rewards or treasures I find on a journey are incidental.  Any rewards or treasures I find on a quest are purposeful.
·       In a journey you find people and places.  In a quest you find yourself.
·      Most people return home from a journey.  Not everyone returns home from a quest.
·      A journey usually ends.  Quests may never end.

So if life is a quest, I have to ask the following questions:
·      What am I looking for?
·      Is it worth leaving family, friends and the familiar to go on this quest?
·      What do I want to accomplish?
·      Am I willing to accept the possibility of failure?
·      Are there others who will go with me?
·      What am I looking for?
·      What am I looking for?
·      What am I looking for?

A quest is far more demanding and requires much more attention.  I believe most of us don’t know what we’re looking for.  Worse, I believe most of us don’t even know that we’re supposed to be looking for something.  I supposed it depends on my outlook.  If I believe that life does not have a meaning beyond what I can experience with my senses and immediate gratification, then life is probably just a journey.  But if I believe there is more to life, both in this life and beyond, then life is a quest. 
Make no mistake; quests are harder.  I think in some ways my life has been harder, not because of any particular bad circumstances or problems; everyone has those.  My life has been harder because I’ve always believed I was called to do something and be something special.  I believe I was born into this world to make a difference.   I have believed this my whole life.  I’m not trying to be pretentious.  I actually believe this is true of most people, if not everyone.  But for some reason, my purpose never lets me go.  I will be honest.  I want wealth and fame, not for their own sake, but as vehicles to enable  me help others move forward.  If I achieve wealth and fame however, that is not the end of my quest, because those will be results, not reasons.
What am I looking for?
I’m looking for a way to bless God, the world, my loved ones and myself through all the gifts I have been given.  I want to create a world of peace, joy and purpose by being a calm steward of the gifts I have been given.  I know I am not here to eat, work, sleep and watch TV.  Every day brings me one day closer to my eternal destiny, but not necessarily to my earthly destiny.  That only happens when I am purposefully pursuing my quest, my reasons for being here.  That only happens when I Get Started and Keep Going on my quest.